Once you have your business idea in place, you need a website to help it see the light of day. WordPress is definitely the most popular platform to build and run your site. 32.4 percent of all the websites use WordPress. The CMS has a whopping 59.5 percent market share.
Once you have chosen to develop your site with WordPress, you would need a good abode for it. Choosing the right host is central to the smooth running of your site.
There are dozens of WordPress hosting service providers out there. It may seem overwhelming to choose the right one for your site.
Getting stressed out already?
Here are some key considerations while choosing a suitable WordPress host:
WordPress Hosting Service Essentials
Besides the performance and quality of services, your WordPress hosting service should come with some essential features:
- MySQL databases: It is a free-to-use open source Relational Database Management System (RDBMS). It uses Structured Query Language (SQL).
- LAMP (Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP): The solution is used for creating dynamic websites and applications.
- Linux Server: It’s better to choose a Linux server over Windows as it’s compatible with a host of programming languages. You can choose to go for a Windows server if you’re planning to use Windows-specific applications.
- A Good Control Panel: You can’t rely on the web hosting company for basic content changes. You need something like a cPanel that you can easily use for customizing your site.
- PHP Support: PHP is a server-side scripting language. It’s used for web development. It also works as a general language for programming purposes.
You should go for a WordPress hosting service that meets your specific business requirements. Here are some questions that will help you to plan for your current and future business needs:
- Do you need one website or more?
- Do you need backup services? If yes, then do you have a budget for it?
- Would a free domain be of interest to you?
- Would you prefer a host that would support unlimited addons domains or subdomains?
Foreseeing your requirements will help you to get the most out of your WordPress hosting service. Besides that, some of the key performance features include:
- Abundant disk space
- Guaranteed uptimes
- Speedy servers
- Adequate bandwidth
Going with a cheap hosting service may result in loss of time and productivity in handling downtimes and server problems. You can research online and go through reviews of different hosting service providers. Make sure you’re choosing a host that goes with your business size.
An online business runs 24X7. This means that your site should be up and running all the time. To ensure your site is always live and error-free, your hosting service must give you prompt technical support. The service provider should have the capability to solve small and big issues quickly and effectively. A good WordPress hosting service should:
- Have multiple contact options – Phone, email, chat etc.
- Be known for its quick customer service.
- Provide customer service teams to help you whenever required.
Cost is a big factor while choosing to purchase any service or tool for a business. But it’s not a good idea to go for the cheapest hosting service. It’s necessary to understand the features and the quality of the services. If you pay less you might end up getting less. It may cost you a lot more in the long run.
Here are some quick tips:
- Dive deep into the features – do not fall for unlimited everything.
- As a small business owner, you can choose for a hosting plan between $3 – $30. Anything less than $3 will not provide you with satisfactory services.
- If you have a large number of monthly visitors then you can switch from shared to VPS or dedicated hosting.
It’s pivotal to backup all of your site content, and secure yourself from the dangers of a crash. Most good hosting service providers will automatically backup your data or provide you with an option for a manual backup. You can backup your data using plugins in WordPress. At times some of these plugins do not work with specific hosting services.
Your hosting service should allow you to use plugins for backing up your data.
Security features are on your priority list. Here are some key features to look out for:
- SSLs: Running an online business requires you to collect sensitive customer information. SSLs are critical to ensuring that this information remains secure.
- Sitelock: It helps protect your site from malware. It also ensures that your site does not get blacklisted.
Shared hosting provides a single server for a number of small websites.
Such a hosting service is relatively cost-effective. It’s suitable for small businesses that do not have a high level of traffic.
There’s no limit to disk space in this type of hosting. So you don’t have to worry even if your website grows. It also allows you to go live with your website quickly and easily.
Some of the drawbacks of shared hosting include:
- At times single servers host thousands of websites which lowers the speed of your site.
- A shared hosting service will not be able to manage a huge traffic spike.
- It is relatively less secure. With a large number of websites on one server, you cannot be sure that all the sites would be updated for security and maintenance.
- You cannot do server customization in case of shared hosting due to its impact on other customer sites.
A Virtual Private Server (or VPS) hosting is suitable for business websites that are growing. The type of hosting provides you with a dedicated server section. It allows you to install software, take control of resources and run your VPS according to your business requirements.
It can easily handle a sudden increase in site traffic. VPS hosting provides you with root access which means you can manage and update your hosting easily. VPS customization ensures a higher level of server security as well. The type of hosting provides you with more bandwidth and resources ensuring higher website speed and a superior user experience.
There are a few drawbacks of VPS hosting as well:
- As your website grows you would need to upgrade your hosting as it has limited bandwidth and disk space.
- You would either need technical knowledge or a resource to set up VPS hosting.
- The cost of VPS hosting is higher than shared hosting and increases with the quality of the service.
This type of hosting provides a dedicated server for your site. Dedicated hosting requires you to pay for the whole server. This type of hosting is suitable for large businesses who have their own technical team to install and manage the site server. It provides you with complete flexibility to customize the server according to your business requirements. With dedicated resources, you can use them to run multiple websites.
Some of the drawbacks of dedicated WordPress hosting services include:
- The maintenance and cost of dedicated servers are much higher than shared or VPS.
- You have to upgrade to new servers when you need more resources or in case the hardware gets old.
- You need technical resources and experience to manage dedicated hosting.
If you’re looking for a trouble-free hosting solution then managed hosting may be the best solution. Such service providers help you in keeping your WordPress site updated. They also offer specialized WordPress support. All you need to worry about is the content and overall theme of your site.
The services will cost you more than shared or VPS hosting. The hosting type includes additional features like support for staging sites, security features, and backups. It gives you optimum resources according to the needs of your site. The services are usually scalable and you can increase the resources as your site grows.
Here are some of the limitations of managed hosting:
- It’s relatively expensive.
- It may not be suitable in case you’re looking for some big integrations or customizations in WordPress.
- It may restrict you from installing a certain type of WordPress plugins.
Over to You
Getting a reliable hosting service is indispensable to running a successful online business. A good host ensures that your website
loads fast, is up and running all the time, and free from malware. Based on the factors mentioned above, you can research the best hosting service for your WordPress site. You can also check out these top hosting services and choose the one that suits your business.
I hope this article will help you find the right host for your WordPress site. Please feel free to share your personal experiences in the comments section below.